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Bike lovers to hold fundraiser for potential bike-share program

Skinny Wheels owner

Eric Phillips

SALISBURY — To Skinny Wheels Bike Shop owner Eric Phillips, starting a bike-share program seems like a solution to a lot of Salisbury’s concerns.

In addition to improving the health of cyclists and helping the environment, a bike-share program could bring tourists to the area, he said.

“Greensboro is doing a lot with the bike-share programs. Charlotte’s done tons with the bike-share programs. Any city that I know of that’s done a bike-share program, it’s been huge for them,” Phillips said.

As a bike shop owner, Phillips said he frequently gets requests from people who want to rent bikes.

“But they might not be one type of bike fits all. When people are paying a rental rate, a lot of times they want something very specific,” Phillips said.

By introducing a bike-share program, he said, people will have access to transportation that fits their needs.

“You have a lot of people that need transportation,” Phillips said. “You have people who just need to be able to get from one side of town to the other.”

Phillips said he and a group he’s been working with have decided to make the program a privately funded venture.

“It seems to us (that) it would be easier, quicker and less of a hassle to just make it a private venture, on our own. If the city gets involved, of course, that’s going to be tax dollars and it’s going to have to go through all the red tape, and it gets kind of pushed to the side,” Phillips said.

The fundraising will begin Saturday with a “poker run.”

The event will require participants to bike between Grievous Gallery, where everyone will begin; Morgan Ridge Railwalk Brewery and Eatery; Bounce City; Mean Mug; and The Pedal Factory.

At each station, participants will draw a card. An attendant will mark what card participants get on a score sheet. Participants will finish at Grievous Gallery.

Whoever gets the best poker hand will win a GT Palomar Mountain Bike from Skinny Wheels Bike Shop.

There will also be a prize for the person with the worst poker hand.

The fundraiser will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday and is open to anyone who can ride a bike. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children.

Helmets are required to participate.

For more information, go to bikesalisbury.org.

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.

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